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IGERT Trainee Hosts Swaziland Researcher


Jillian Jensen hosted Samson Sithole, Agricultural Manager from the Swaziland Water and Agricultural Development Enterprise (SWADE), Swaziland, on a 12 day learning tour of Florida. There were two primary objectives: 1. To gather information and best practices on issues related to sub-tropical agricultural value chains and watershed management, and 2. To identify main lessons learned about the above and how they can be integrated into SWADE’s project activities to address on-going challenges and strengthen impacts. The tour consisted of interviews and field visits with agricultural producers and cooperatives, agricultural researchers and extensionists with the University of Florida, representatives of private sector organizations and advocacy groups supporting Florida’s agricultural sector, representatives of three of Florida’s water management districts, and state representatives in the marketing division of the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Information gathered from this tour is to be shared with the Swaziland government ministries, international financial institutions supporting the project, and the project’s implementing partners. Jillian Jensen will return to Swaziland in Fall 2010 to help disseminate these findings and integrate them in the planning and implementation of SWADE’s rural development projects.